Getting ready for Mor-hor-hor-tor

This post is brought to you by Count Dracula. 😉 No doubt is actually perfect that a creepy dude is narrating this post – cause this bathroom is starting to haunt us, it’s just not moving forward nearly as fast as our little noggins thought it would. Can’t win them all, my friend!

Mudding and taping – just like backerboard, it’s a crucial step to the whole bathroom remodeling process. Little did we know when we remodeled our first bath that properly prepping the space through your backerboard/mudding steps is actually one of the most important parts. First you have to make sure your backer board is installed correctly (more on that here), and your mud job then becomes your final chance to make sure the walls are perfectly prepped, level, and ready for the tiles. You don’t need much for this step, just a trowel, some mud, and fiber-glass mesh tape. Bam. Done. Oh, and some sand paper, to smooth down the coats and make them nice and smooth. Here is the sandpaper we used.

How to install backerboard
Sand Paper

After you install the backerboard, there will be some gaps between the board and your wall, which is where the tape comes in handy. After making sure there are no big deviations between the wall and the backerboard (in height), you’ll want to proceed with laying down the tape over the gap between the two surfaces. You’ll want to put tape on all of the edges where you have gaps, and where the backerboard meets up with the wall.

How to install mesh tape on backerboard
Mesh Tape

Once the tape is installed, grab your mud and your trowel and start to add a slop of it onto the wall. Make sure that all the gaps are completely full after the first time through, and that everything is sufficiently covered. You’ll want to worry a bit about evenness of the coat during the first step, but your primary objectives should be to get as much mud on there, to fill in all the gaps, as possible.

How to install backerboard
Mudding the Tape

After you come through with your first coat, you’ll want to let everything dry, probably overnight is best. We came back through the next evening and sanded the wall down really well, which helped to determine where more mud was needed.

How to sand mud on backerboard
Sanding it Down

Another mistake we made with the first house, was only doing one coat of mud. Two coats looked SO.MUCH.BETTER and I could absolutely tell that the wall was more flush, and better prepared for tile. By the time we came back through and sanded a second time, the backerboard and the wall looked absolutely the same, with an even coat and no variation in height between the two surfaces.

How to mud backerboard
Almost Ready for Tile

These types of steps are the absolute hardest for me not to want to skip over and half-ass. Resist the urge! I can’t even begin to tell you what a difference taking the extra time is making on this bathroom remodel. Prepping is the hardest part, and the most boring (!), so it can be hard to stay  motivated to do it right. I’m so glad that we are sticking to our guns on this one, cause I think that the final product is going to look like a million bucks! I’ll have some before and after shots of the bathroom TILE next week!

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